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Formula Production Stops Again After Abbott Factory Floods

The storm will likely delay production and distribution of new formula for a few weeks.
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By Wyndi Kappes, Associate Editor
Updated June 16, 2022
The Abbott manufacturing facility in Sturgis, Michigan, on May 13, 2022
Image: JEFF KOWALSKY/Getty Images

Just a few days after reopening, the nation’s largest formula manufacturer, Abbott Nutrition, has stopped production at its Sturgis plant due to flooding from powerful storms in southwestern Michigan. The halt in production is likely to delay the distribution of new formula for weeks.

According to a statement released by Abbott, the company has “Stopped production of its EleCare specialty formula that was underway to assess the damage caused by the storm and clean and re-sanitize the plant,” adding, “This will likely delay production and distribution of new product for a few weeks.”

As parents wait for production to restart and much-need formula to hit shelves, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared Abbott Nutrition to release 300,000 cans of its EleCare formula. EleCare formulas are hypoallergenic and are primarily used by families with infants who have severe food allergies or gastrointestinal disorders that require amino acid-based formulas. Parents in urgent need can reach out to their pediatrician to request a shipment or directly to Abbott at +1-800-881-0876.

The factory had previously restarted production at its Michigan factory on June 4 after the plant voluntarily shut down and recalled certain formulas in February following consumer complaints that several babies who had consumed Abbott formula had become sick. The restart came after Abbott reached an agreement with the Food and Drug Administration to safely reopen the plant.

Once the factory restarts production again, Abbott chairman and CEO Robert B. Ford confirmed in a press release that the company would begin production of EleCare, Alimentum and metabolic formulas first and then begin production of Similac and other formulas.

“We understand the urgent need for formula and our top priority is getting high-quality, safe formula into the hands of families across America. We will ramp production as quickly as we can while meeting all requirements,” said Abbott Nutrition in a statement. “We’re committed to safety and quality and will do everything we can to re-earn the trust parents, caregivers and health care providers have placed in us for 130 years.”

You can read more about available resources to help you find the formula you need here.

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